This month’s Accretionary Wedge is being hosted by Ann’s Musings. She asked for: “Throw me your ‘favorite geologic picture’ mister.” Some are using gorgeous field sites, but my favorite picture is actually a bit of a joke.
For my PhD research, I ended up working in the Swiss Alps. Day one out was long, long, long (and it was magically also my birthday). By the time we reached the col that was going to actually become my field area it was rather late in the day and we were still 1000 m above the closest road. Bridget (my field assistant) and I were wearing every item of clothing that we had in our packs due to the cold (there was still snow on the ground & it was July). Before we could call it a day, we decided to collect four samples (we had a number of other rocks from earlier at other sites to the south of the col). Three popped out without an issue in reasonable sizes (enough for thin sections, tomography, and bulk chemistry), but the fourth was stubborn. It came off in a huge sheet:
while Bridge and I proceeded to shiver, these three male geologists tried to get 04AD15 down to a reasonable size. They used the sledge. They used a hammer with a chisel. They hopped up & down on the slab. They wedged another rock underneath the slab and tried everything again. Eventually, pieces started to fall of the edges. In the end, 04AD15 is still my largest sample. But its also my best sample of the bunch (including what I got a year later!), so all that work was worth it. But whenever I look at anything related to the sample, I have to imagine three senior geologists trying like crazy to break the slab 🙂